At The Outer Border

Wednesday evening. I get an e-mail calling for people ready to travel in the next few days to the European outer border in Hungary and volunteer as peacekeepers at the crossing. It's an organisation I'm proud of having been working with for long years, well known for a very different kind of activities. But we are trained in non-violent intervention and know how to de-escalate tense situations. I don't need to finish reading the message to know I want to do that.

Saturday. We arrived in Szeged, at the Hungarian-Serbian border after a long road trip at two in the morning. After a good night's sleep, camping mattresses and sleeping bags crouched between many other volunteers, we are waiting to get a briefing before going to the Röszke crossing. Hundreds of refugees arrive there every day, finally entering the European Union. UNHCR and NGOs provide these people with the most needed supplies: food, clothes, medical care. But people sometimes get frustrated from long waiting hours and confused information about the legal situation. This is where we come in, to calm them down. But we also provide a solar docking station for people to charge their mobiles and WiFi. This is what I know by now.

I don't know yet for how long I will stay here, but in any case will try to keep you updated about events here during the next few days.

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